by Eric Song
In a matter of a mere eight years, Xero has managed to create and foster an “ecosystem” of numerous groups of successful software developers, over 200,000 small business owners, and thousands of advisors – all over the world. Xero not only offers a revolutionary accounting software, but also encourages an active global community of developers, customers, and business advisors to create this ecosystem of software solutions.
The Add-on Partner program has more than doubled to over 90 certified solutions that integrate directly with Xero – just in the past year. The program’s goal is simple: to build a platform that can be used by all of their clients. Through their add-on program, Xero has allowed itself to be transformed into a viable and applicable workflow solution for every client through personalized platforms.
When Xero’s founder, Rod Drury started his company, he had a vision of this global ecosystem. He is proud to say that his vision has been fulfilled. Software companies scattered all over the world ask to become Xero partners. After all, Xero started in New Zealand, rocked Australia and the UK’s accounting industry, and is slowly, but surely breaking into the U.S. market. Other companies, like Fathom, Receipt Bank, and Stitch Labs, have seen the potential within Xero and fortuitously seized their opportunities.
“But the ecosystem is far from complete,” said Xero’s Partner program manager – Ronan Quirke – in his article from May 2012. “We have loads of small business customers who still don’t have an integration between Xero and the key application they use or need to run their business.” Yes, Xero boasts over 300 integrated applications, but there is room for developers to help enter untouched industries such as childcare, student, farm, and property management systems. The add-on niche of this ecosystem is growing rapidly; we hope that the saying ‘there’s an app (or add-on) for that’ becomes a reality.
And all these valuable add-ons translate to many satisfied, dedicated customers. For example, retailers love these integrated add-ons, like Shopify (online store) and Vend (point-of-sales) that make it incredibly easy to own a retail business. “Shopify and Xero speak so well together,” says owner of Taylor Stitch – a custom tailored shirt retail store. Shopify set up an eCommerce system for Taylor Stitch that allowed its owners to focus more on their business’ growth. Success has also reached chocolatier Briana Labis, owner of the award-winning Sixth Course. With a smile, she said, “Xero and Vend have allowed us to be chefs, not accountants.”
But Xero isn’t only for retail business and stores. For creative agencies, Xero has also seen amazing success. Crush + Lovely, a digital products company based in New York City, focus on creative work they love. After a quick Google search, Crush & Lovely found their accounting solution Xero, whose cloud-based service hooked the business. They loved that they could access Xero through their tablets and laptops, get the big picture of their finances, and keep track of invoices. “The stress levels have go ne down, quite a bit,” says CEO Matt Blanchard, “we’re free to just…do the work!”
But these companies need advisors and consulting to develop the best workflow solution possible. With thousands of accounting and bookkeeping partners, you can get the help you need to form the perfect accounting platform for your business. Xerocon, an international conference in San Francisco, London, Sydney, and Auckland, allows Xero advisors to find out about the latest add-ons, extend the services they offer their clients, and make connections. “Add-ons let businesses using Xero to interact and easily managing their finances without any accounting background,” exclaimed Nick Pasquarosa, co-founder of Bookkeeper360.com. “My attendance at Xerocon helped me understand other accounting professionals – how they ran their practices, and how they were adapting to other business technologies.”
The global ecosystem – filled with passionate developers, satisfied small business owners, and thriving Xero certified advisors – is successful and growing. Xero has revolutionized accounting software and has paved the way for cloud-based modern businesses, where smartphones are staples and mobility is key. As a client or partner, you should join the ecosystem to be a part of Xero’s exciting journey of growthAs one of Xero’s few Platinum partners, Bookkeeper360.com is the largest Xero certified bookkeeping advisor in the United States. We will help you craft an effective, personalized back-office for your company to help make decisions faster, operate more efficiently, and lower costs. We can also design a flow chart outlining your work flow for free! Let us do the heavy-duty work, so you don’t have to.